The Army has put its vast Information Operations apparatus — formerly Psychological Operations — to work bullshit-bombing the American public for the Pentagon’s initiative to push women into Ranger School, the Infantry Officers Basic Leadership Course, and, in 2013, Infantry One Station Unit Training. (And to do it all, we remind you that the Chief of Staff Himself says, for the Army’s single highest priority in peace or war: officer careers). The latest piece of propaganda is an editorial about women in the Sapper Leaders Course that ran on the Army home page, and was widely distributed as a press release to mainstream newspapers.
It was not a success with the newspapers, most of which delete Army press releases along with the other spam, but it ran on almost every propaganda outlet the Army has, hundreds of them — and, inexplicably, on the website of Soldier of Fortune magazine. (It looks like that section just has an automated feed of
happy bullshit press releases from the services). It’s on the main Army page, the Training and Doctrine command page, a special page on women in the Army, the Ft. Leonard Wood website, the website and in the dead tree version of the Ft. Leonard Wood newspaper,
The aim of the Melissa Buckley editorial is clearly informational preparation of the battlefield for any coming battle with Congress over the women-in-infantry initiative. In effect, we’re spending millions of tax dollars for one branch of government to lobby — to propagandize — to mislead — another. Not that wasteful spending is likely to alarm Congress, the acclaimed virtuosos of that instrument.
While the story explicitly states that the standards are no lower for women, that’s not what former instructors say — although they say it with the look-left, look-right, look-behind caution that we’re used to seeing from the downtrodden subjects of totalitarian states, prior to risky truth-telling.
There are some interesting statistics and interesting quotes embedded in the piece. A majority of men taking the course pass, but almost 2/3 of women who have attempted it have failed. Both males and females must be Engineer officers or NCOs. It’s unclear from the story whether any women NCOs have attended the course; if so, none have passed, as all of the 46 graduates have been officers or officer cadets.
The quotes are full of Oprahfied you-go-girlism:
“I was very proud to be part of such an amazing group of strong, confident and determined women. It was great to be there with sisters in arms, and I know that because of our hard work we were able to represent women well to our fellow Sappers,” [2008 grad Capt. Emily] Hannenberg said.
Awww. Represent, sista!
“It helps to break mindsets about female inadequacy or limits being placed on what females can or should do in the military,” [Hannenberg] said.
Because nothing holds them back except Teh Patriarchy, of which Weaponsman.com are proud to be fully-tabbed members.
“I didn’t know going into the course that a woman hadn’t been the honor graduate before, but I’m proud to have shown that women can do it,” said 1st Lt. Elizabeth Betterbed, 2010 Sapper Leader Course honor graduate.
(Aside: was she named by Ian Fleming? Somewhere, the old spook-turned-novelist is chortling, if he’s reading this. Still, if he’s reading our stuff, and we his, we’re getting the best of that deal).
“It is important that women of this branch be given the opportunity alongside our male counterparts to show the unity of diverse Soldiers in the Engineer Regiment,” [Maj. Jennifer] Etters said.
We knew if we stuck it out long enough, we’d see the Central Shibboleth of the New Post-Religious Belief System uttered. And sure enough, the Golden Calf of “diversity” made its appearance right on schedule. It’s enough to make you throw your stone tablets down in a huff.
But we’re starting to get the hang of this post-military Army that’s already turned its institutional back on its combat units overseas. It’s not important to train to win wars. The Army is working hard to get all that depressing and dumb war orientation out of its system and return to its peacetime, happy, hollow place. It’s important to have Hollywood-rifle-squad superficial “diversity”: which now includes the gay one, the blonde-starlet one, and the post-ingenue whose skin is now too wrinkly for closeups, as well as the Kid from Brooklyn. It’s also important to project a unified political viewpoint and crush dissent like a bug.
Lord Love a Duck.
There will be more information preparation of the battlefield like this — one-sided editorials and sudden discoveries of mighty Amazons who walk among us. Kindly keep us posted in the comments.
Kevin was a former Special Forces weapons man (MOS 18B, before the 18 series, 11B with Skill Qualification Indicator of S). His focus was on weapons: their history, effects and employment. He started WeaponsMan.com in 2011 and operated it until he passed away in 2017. His work is being preserved here at the request of his family.